An immigration watchdog is unhappy with a federal judge’s decision that blocks the first line of defense against bogus asylum seekers.
On Monday, a federal judge blocked U.S. Customs and Border Protection employees from conducting the initial screening for those seeking asylum.
The Trump administration argued that designated CBP employees are trained comparably to asylum officers at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, but U.S. District Judge Richard J. Leon disagreed and ruled in favor of the plaintiffs in a lawsuit challenging the initial screening process.
The nationwide injunction will likely have little, if any, immediate impact on the Trump administration's efforts to rein in asylum because the government has effectively suspended asylum during the coronavirus pandemic.
Ira Mehlman, a spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform, says the decision could have a long-term impact on the asylum process because the Border Patrol is the “first line of defense” to fight illegal immigration.
“They are well aware that there are people who are trying to scam the system by making bogus claims of asylum,” Mehlman tells OneNewsNow.
The New York Times famously reviewed asylum requests and reported that approximately 80 percent are rejected annually.
According to Mehlman, the Border Patrol agents are experienced and knowledgeable, and they are routinely hearing asylum seekers giving them the same scripted, rehearsed stories.